Author Topic: FIRE = Troll...  (Read 6378 times)

Holyoak

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FIRE = Troll...
« on: February 23, 2019, 09:48:25 AM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll at another website where I was seeking help, where mentioning I was FIRE'd was helpful toward getting a good answer.  One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.  The other was about the same, also saying just ignore the troll.  I sat back saying nothing all Sun Tzu style, hoping far wiser members would chime in, they did, shredding these brainwashed idiots. 

Jealousy projection, or perhaps sheer consumer blinded fear stupidity is amazing to see, right there in HD...  Boy, George Carlin only gets wiser as time goes on, especially for folks like me and you who knew it was, is all a sham, all along.  Something about a big red, white, and blue d.......

 

2Birds1Stone

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2019, 11:44:46 AM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll..... One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.....

No offense to you, but at 52 it's not like you're a spring chicken. People have been retiring in their 50's for decades. Most LEO's and military get a pretty nice retirement with 20-25 years of service, same with MANY tradespeople.

Holyoak

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2019, 12:09:29 PM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll..... One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.....

No offense to you, but at 52 it's not like you're a spring chicken. People have been retiring in their 50's for decades. Most LEO's and military get a pretty nice retirement with 20-25 years of service, same with MANY tradespeople.

None taken.

You and I know this, but it seems many don't, or most germane to our lifestyle, WILL NOT believe even "normal" folks can FIRE a lot earlier than 67 or never.  I did not mention in this post, as I did in the post in question that I actually FIRE'd in my mid 40's...  This REALLY had their uninformed heads spinning. 

bacchi

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2019, 12:37:47 PM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll..... One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.....

No offense to you, but at 52 it's not like you're a spring chicken. People have been retiring in their 50's for decades. Most LEO's and military get a pretty nice retirement with 20-25 years of service, same with MANY tradespeople.

And most go back to work.

If you don't LBYM, even a fat pension isn't enough.

Just Joe

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2019, 04:32:38 PM »
With the fortunes of the various economic demographics rising and falling at different rates - I can see why some think FI/RE is impossible. Our fortunes are steady (or rising slightly) while others we know are struggling even in this prosperous economy. The next recession will hurt some more than others as people far smarter than I have explained. People with alot of debt or limited education or working in certain career paths. 

Bloop Bloop

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2019, 08:09:05 PM »
On reddit i have been criticised as trolling for saying that I want lower income tax on high earners so that I can more easily retire.

Just because I'm not starving doesn't mean that my views on income tax are any less valid than another person's.

Treb3

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2019, 08:22:12 PM »
What does LBYM mean?

exterous

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2019, 08:28:04 PM »
What does LBYM mean?

Live Below Your Means

nereo

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2019, 09:22:51 AM »
On reddit i have been criticised as trolling for saying that I want lower income tax on high earners so that I can more easily retire.

Just because I'm not starving doesn't mean that my views on income tax are any less valid than another person's.

What's the tax-structure like in Australia?  As I recall, at least a  portion of the federal revenue comes from a sales tax (e.g. VAT) tax, no?

Bloop Bloop

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2019, 07:25:25 PM »
On reddit i have been criticised as trolling for saying that I want lower income tax on high earners so that I can more easily retire.

Just because I'm not starving doesn't mean that my views on income tax are any less valid than another person's.

What's the tax-structure like in Australia?  As I recall, at least a  portion of the federal revenue comes from a sales tax (e.g. VAT) tax, no?

Yes, we have a GST (goods and services) tax on most goods of 10%. Our overall tax as a proportion of GDP is quite moderate. But we have a heavy reliance on income tax.

Marginal income tax rate is 38.5% for income from $90,000 to $180,000 (AUD) and 47% for income above $180,000 (I have included the mandatory "Medicare levy" which pays for universal healthcare). If the left-wing government wins the next election, the top rate will go up to 49% from $180,000 onwards.

To me that seems quite punitive and a huge impost on those of us wanting to FIRE. Keeping in mind that our purchasing power is much lower than the U.S. so $180k here is equivalent in purchasing power terms to probably USD $100,000 - $120,000. (e.g. - a Porsche 911 costs $250k here as compared to $95k in the U.S. due to our raft of taxes including a luxury tax.)

On Reddit I was told that it was 'selfish' of me to want to retire early when there are people starving on the streets, etc. My reply was that we already have an incredibly generous tax system and it's now bordering on punitive. I still get downvoted and called a troll.

The Guru

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2019, 08:05:31 PM »
On reddit i have been criticised as trolling for saying that I want lower income tax on high earners so that I can more easily retire.

Just because I'm not starving doesn't mean that my views on income tax are any less valid than another person's.

What's the tax-structure like in Australia?  As I recall, at least a  portion of the federal revenue comes from a sales tax (e.g. VAT) tax, no?

Yes, we have a GST (goods and services) tax on most goods of 10%. Our overall tax as a proportion of GDP is quite moderate. But we have a heavy reliance on income tax.

Marginal income tax rate is 38.5% for income from $90,000 to $180,000 (AUD) and 47% for income above $180,000 (I have included the mandatory "Medicare levy" which pays for universal healthcare). If the left-wing government wins the next election, the top rate will go up to 49% from $180,000 onwards.

To me that seems quite punitive and a huge impost on those of us wanting to FIRE. Keeping in mind that our purchasing power is much lower than the U.S. so $180k here is equivalent in purchasing power terms to probably USD $100,000 - $120,000. (e.g. - a Porsche 911 costs $250k here as compared to $95k in the U.S. due to our raft of taxes including a luxury tax.)

On Reddit I was told that it was 'selfish' of me to want to retire early when there are people starving on the streets, etc. My reply was that we already have an incredibly generous tax system and it's now bordering on punitive. I still get downvoted and called a troll.

That makes no sense; how does YOUR retirement adversely affect anyone else? If anything, your leaving the job market creates a potential opportunity for one of those unfortunates.

GuitarStv

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2019, 07:48:35 AM »
That makes no sense; how does YOUR retirement adversely affect anyone else?

Causes a quick review of life choices, followed by depression in a great many people.  :P

mm1970

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2019, 10:27:32 AM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll at another website where I was seeking help, where mentioning I was FIRE'd was helpful toward getting a good answer.  One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.  The other was about the same, also saying just ignore the troll.  I sat back saying nothing all Sun Tzu style, hoping far wiser members would chime in, they did, shredding these brainwashed idiots. 

Jealousy projection, or perhaps sheer consumer blinded fear stupidity is amazing to see, right there in HD...  Boy, George Carlin only gets wiser as time goes on, especially for folks like me and you who knew it was, is all a sham, all along.  Something about a big red, white, and blue d.......
Age 52, W. PA.

For the record, my stepdad retired in W. PA at 55.

A couple of my older siblings also retired in their mid to late 50s.
My BIL essentially retired in his early 50s.  He's still working PT, because he doesn't know how to quit, but his body is pretty wrecked...

I've known others who retired in their early 40s.

And 52 isn't a spring chicken?  It used to sound old, but as I'm hitting 49 this year...doesn't seem old now.

From what I've seen though, having kids young or no kids seems to be a uniting factor in the early retirement. 
(One sister: kids when young.  Other sister: no kids.  Stepdad: married my  mom when we were out of the house.  BIL: had kids young.)
« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 10:30:19 AM by mm1970 »

happy

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2019, 02:50:29 PM »
Just told a colleague I'm retiring at 60, and he thought that sounded awfully early :D

nereo

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2019, 03:05:23 PM »
Just told a colleague I'm retiring at 60, and he thought that sounded awfully early :D

Might as well trot this infographic out again.  Retiring at 60 you are definitely still ahead of the curve.
(yes, it's been pointed out that there's two 50-54s.  Take it up with the author)

Bloop Bloop

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2019, 03:36:37 PM »
That makes no sense; how does YOUR retirement adversely affect anyone else?

Causes a quick review of life choices, followed by depression in a great many people.  :P
That and the fact that a lot of us early retirees don't pay any income tax (or much in sales or other taxes) so aren't contributing to the greater good of society. I've gotten this many many times from others.

Most self-funded retirees would have had to earn some consistent income on which they paid income tax during their working years. Plus passive income is also taxed unless you are drawing very little of it. And even if you live very frugally, you are at least not expending society's resources and you are also leaving a job for someone else to take. The fact is you are contributing to the greater good by living a sustainable lifestyle. (I know you weren't arguing otherwise, but it surprises me that many people cannot make the realisation more easily.)

happy

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2019, 03:39:38 PM »
Just told a colleague I'm retiring at 60, and he thought that sounded awfully early :D

Might as well trot this infographic out again.  Retiring at 60 you are definitely still ahead of the curve.


I don't have detailed stats for Australia, but from memory the mean retirement age is 63.
Just shows how warped your mind becomes hanging out on this forum ;).

RetiredAt63

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2019, 07:47:02 PM »
That makes no sense; how does YOUR retirement adversely affect anyone else?

Causes a quick review of life choices, followed by depression in a great many people.  :P
That and the fact that a lot of us early retirees don't pay any income tax (or much in sales or other taxes) so aren't contributing to the greater good of society. I've gotten this many many times from others.

I've heard that too.  I guess I am living high on the hog, my income taxes are pretty much the same as they always were.

KodeBlue

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2019, 09:23:22 AM »
Had the pleasure of hearing I was a liar and a troll at another website where I was seeking help, where mentioning I was FIRE'd was helpful toward getting a good answer.  One poster said it's impossible at my age, because of rising costs, living a "normal" life.  The other was about the same, also saying just ignore the troll.  I sat back saying nothing all Sun Tzu style, hoping far wiser members would chime in, they did, shredding these brainwashed idiots. 

Jealousy projection, or perhaps sheer consumer blinded fear stupidity is amazing to see, right there in HD...  Boy, George Carlin only gets wiser as time goes on, especially for folks like me and you who knew it was, is all a sham, all along.  Something about a big red, white, and blue d.......
Aren't you going to give us a link to the site so have a good laugh at the responses?

Holyoak

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #19 on: February 26, 2019, 01:03:17 PM »
I wrote this first, when a few polite people were curious, as to how one retires early:

Thought I would add more, as it relates to finances. Yes, 52 and retired, not on disability... And yes, it is very nice having been so since I was 46. I invested by myself via low cost mutual funds/REITS, low cost brokerage, saved from a very early age, invested any windfall, lived very far under my means, was/am very self-sufficient, and always valued time over chasing $$$ or material crap.

Could not have done it having anyone/advisor charging 1-2% AUM (Assets Under Management), where IMO this will become even less doable in the future. I like to volunteer my time helping non-profits with their 403b implementation, and helping individual investors reach their financial goals, learn to budget, coach them toward dropping the whole more toys/keeping up with the Joneses guilt trip BS. Not to seem smug, humble braggy, or uncaring toward others who truly struggle, but I would have never thought money would be the least of my worries, rather managing what seems too much freedom of choice in my retirement is.


Then got this from one poster:


I am sorry, things still aren't adding up.
Unless you are a 20 year former military/federal on a good pension or have been making upper 6 figures and saving like you are describing, the retirement at 52 is impossible. The sheer cost of medical insurance and out of pocket medical is astronomical. To live frugally you need about 3000 a month. You'll have mortgage/rent to pay, utilities, medical care, food, gas, necessities and taxes to pay. No investment at your age will guarantee that.


Another poster replies to this with:

The OP said he retired at 46 and is 52 now. This simply doesn't pass the sniff test. The locations the OP has written about aren't mid-6 figure income or "hit it big in a tech company" locations. 20 year former military doesn't need ACA. They moved a number of times so it's not 25 years of generous state/local pension with some kind of accelerator and that would have come with a health insurance deal, too. I see no point in participating in a troll thread.

I'd add that if you own a low home ownership cost house outright, you could probably retire on less than your $36K income.


I reply to the post above:

Well then *******, I'd appreciate that you not participate, and certainly not call me a troll/liar.

to which I never heard another peep.

To the poster who said things don't add up, I wrote:

Well, all I can tell you is the magic of compounding is very real, and our ideas of frugality seem to diverge. Even with horrible ACA insurance which was much less when I retired at 46, rent payment, and the rest you mention is way less than $3000 a month for me... Even when considering Fed/state taxes by virtue of how my investments are structured. There have been many self made millionaires who worked rather modest jobs, retiring with multi-million dollar portfolios. Many too if you go to sites like mrmoneymustache, are millionaires way before 40, doing jobs paying way less than 6 figures. It's all about delayed gratification, self-sufficiency and discipline, living way under your means, and low cost investing as much $$$ as you can with a plan, and sticking to it. hardly impossible at all.

I surely don't expect any guarantees, have done the best I know how, don't allow lifestyle creep as I progress in retirement and wealth, and financially everything looks fine, full steam ahead.


To this, the same "things don't make sense" poster went full "I'm a troll" too:

This might have worked 40+ years ago, but not any more. Incomes are stagnant, and prices are ever increasing, far outpacing anybody's income capacity. So unless you had a huge starting capital to invest or already invested inheritance, I'd say all of this is bluff.  ACA prices may be low, but the coverage is awful. From what I hear the premiums aren't that pocket friendly, to say the least.

You are either a troll or have made some big miscalculations regarding your finances and future earnings.


I replied no more, others chimed in, and the real trolls never said a peep:

Quote:
Originally Posted by "things don't make sense"
This might have worked 40+ years ago, but not any more.

Nope. The math is just the same as it ever was.

Quote:
Incomes are stagnant, and prices...

The saving/invest choice has to come BEFORE the COL choices.
Too few have been willing to make those tough choices.

Quote:
You are either a troll or ...

Correct. Anyone with a contrary view must be a troll.


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So wrong on so many points. The opportunities and income are plenty, if you are willing to look for it, and work for it.

I raised a family, divorced, but wisely invested my income, did not need to have all the "luxuries", or have what the Jones had, and I now have a very nice investment portfolio. It is possible by most everyone, if you have the discipline for it.

Although I do have a pension, at 57 (retired at 55), I could easily live off my investments.

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I'm boggled at the people who assume the OP is a troll.

He would have turned 18 around 1984 at a time that good paying union jobs might be available right after high school. And 10 yr treasuries yielded 14%. Thus the comment about compounding interest?

I would assume the OP didn't hop off a boxcar in PA, probably had family connections for jobs and reasonable rents. and financial advice from a knowledgeable relative. He mentions being married and that would likely be a 2 earner household, might have lived with parents right out of school.

I sometimes wonder if people who live in high COL areas rationalize that there are no jobs that pay more then a pittance in these backwaters but for someone who is bright and disciplined and has connections that is not necessarily the case. It is easy to imagine someone being able to retire at 46. According to the timeline that would have been about when Obamacare kicked in.


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Quote: Incomes are stagnant,

Maybe yours is, but mine is not, nor is anyone that I work with.
You seem to be making quite a few aSSumptions.

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Thread was 7-8 pages, so I put it all together here.  Have fun poking holes in this tripe, and again seeing it all laid bare that some folks are just too stupid, jealous, or too enmeshed in the machine to see or know the truth.

nereo

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #20 on: February 26, 2019, 01:21:06 PM »
the comments posted about you all seem to come from people who have bought into the popular narrative that (all) incomes are flat, all expenses are rising uncontrollably and everyone in the middle-class is squeezed with an uncertain financial future.

they are no-nothings using these narratives to justify the stress they feel about their own finances.  All you can do is ignore them.  Posters will say that saving 25x your expenses is impossible, then argue taht 25x is not nearly enough, and then tell you that 40x or even  60x is just not enough (...because COLA, apparently).

Holyoak

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #21 on: February 26, 2019, 02:26:54 PM »
Your right nereo, and they probably are subscribed to Suze's newsletter where you BETTER, at a MINIMUM work until you drop, cuz you only had $4,999,999 "saved" up - not near enough.  What effin tools.  But again, they are the same crowd who would call in to Suze and ask "can I afford this"...  Hi Suze, do I pay for groceries or heat this month?"

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #22 on: February 26, 2019, 06:25:24 PM »
In what world are incomes stagnant?

Hell, even if average incomes were stagnant, in what world is that relevant?

Just like we don't have to spend like the "average" person does (i.e., savings rate close to zero), we also don't have to earn like the "average" person does.

Otherwise, we'd all be deeply mediocre. A depressing thought.

Zikoris

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #23 on: February 26, 2019, 10:51:54 PM »
I think it's a badge of honor to move from delusional (which people call you when you're starting your FIRE plan but don't have much money yet) to troll (after you follow your plan for a few years and end up in the exact spot you said you would). We're at around 400K in our early 30s, with the FIRE finish line on the (distant) horizon, and are finally getting called trolls, because "That's impossible in Vancouver on average income, and travelling to six countries a year at the same time? Quit your bullshit."

nereo

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2019, 04:56:53 AM »
In what world are incomes stagnant?
.
It's an oft-repeated talking point here in the US among candidates and the media in general.  And tehre's some truth to it - adjusting for inflation the middle class here in the us has seen very slow (but still positive!) wage growth over the last 2+ decades.  For those that expect every generation to have made financial gains that eclipse their parents (as has been the trend for the past 100 years) many are very upset that they are only slightly better off than people in the 1990s.  In short, expectations have far eclipsed real growth.

But of course there's the flipside of that argument, which is that we are just as wealthy as we've ever been, and there's never been an easier and less costly time to manage and get rich off your own investments. 

Glass half full/empty.

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2019, 06:34:09 AM »
I have had stagnant incomes for a couple of years at previous employers. That was because they didn't see my worth, or I didn't do a good job in my annual goals & objectives / work appraisals.

The solution was to find another employer willing to pay for my experience, and where I had a chance for additional training or increased responsibilities. Each move increased pay in the range of 10-20%.

As long as I stay current with IT technologies, stay busy and gain experience, and pass relevant certifications, I should be OK. I'm trying to stay ahead of the automation curve, being the guy that creates the automation.

Bloop Bloop

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #26 on: February 27, 2019, 02:26:41 PM »
In what world are incomes stagnant?
.
It's an oft-repeated talking point here in the US among candidates and the media in general.  And tehre's some truth to it - adjusting for inflation the middle class here in the us has seen very slow (but still positive!) wage growth over the last 2+ decades.  For those that expect every generation to have made financial gains that eclipse their parents (as has been the trend for the past 100 years) many are very upset that they are only slightly better off than people in the 1990s.  In short, expectations have far eclipsed real growth.

But of course there's the flipside of that argument, which is that we are just as wealthy as we've ever been, and there's never been an easier and less costly time to manage and get rich off your own investments. 

Glass half full/empty.

Thank you, I don't doubt that average incomes have 'stagnated' in the sense that real disposable income is not going up. But I don't see the relevance of average income to a FIRE discussion any more than the relevance of average weight. We each create our futures and we are each responsible for our own finances. What other people (particularly taking into account the general laziness and financial ineptitude of the populace) are achieving or not achieving has little relevance in a FIRE discussion.

If anything, stagnant incomes makes it easier for us to FIRE because there is less inflation to contend with.

ChpBstrd

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #27 on: February 28, 2019, 02:21:02 PM »
Put down the social media. It is doing nothing for you.

partdopy

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #28 on: March 01, 2019, 03:59:04 PM »
In what world are incomes stagnant?


I've never really understood the complaint about wages being stagnant.  If they're receding that's bad, but if your purchasing power remains the same over the years for the same job, what's the issue? 

I think many people just get a job, keep that job with no ambitions, and complain when they don't get a raise.  If you want a raise, its up to you, not your employer, or the government, etc.. Go learn a new skill or negotiate better.

Bloop Bloop

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #29 on: March 01, 2019, 11:14:36 PM »
+1

Complaining that your life is getting neither better nor worse is like complaining that the sun still sets in the west. Something needs to be said for personal agency.

Maenad

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2019, 12:32:34 PM »
I've never really understood the complaint about wages being stagnant.  If they're receding that's bad, but if your purchasing power remains the same over the years for the same job, what's the issue? 

It's not quite the same thing. Stagnant wages doesn't mean your purchasing power is the same, if cost of living has increased. Generally, the big 3 are housing, transportation, and education, and the first and last have outpaced wage growth for sure, on average.

Basically, that means that if the average person just goes with the flow, and keeps up with the Joneses, they'll be worse off than their parents were. It means that everyone needs to actually think about where their money is going if they want to save for a rainy day. Lots of people don't want to do that.

I sympathize, but... that's just the world we live in. Large disparity between rich and poor is an actual societal risk, but protesting the state of the world doesn't put food on the table or a roof over one's head.

ChpBstrd

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #31 on: March 05, 2019, 08:51:45 PM »
I've never really understood the complaint about wages being stagnant.  If they're receding that's bad, but if your purchasing power remains the same over the years for the same job, what's the issue? 

It's not quite the same thing. Stagnant wages doesn't mean your purchasing power is the same, if cost of living has increased. Generally, the big 3 are housing, transportation, and education, and the first and last have outpaced wage growth for sure, on average.

Basically, that means that if the average person just goes with the flow, and keeps up with the Joneses, they'll be worse off than their parents were. It means that everyone needs to actually think about where their money is going if they want to save for a rainy day. Lots of people don't want to do that.

I sympathize, but... that's just the world we live in. Large disparity between rich and poor is an actual societal risk, but protesting the state of the world doesn't put food on the table or a roof over one's head.

And stagnant wages mean your purchasing power goes down if you "must" buy new products and services being offered. Our grandparents didn't have to pay a cable bill, internet bill, netflix bill, or iPhone payments. They had fewer cars with far fewer features and luxuries. They bought clothes less frequently and owned sewing machines instead. Their homes were 1000 to 1500 square feet smaller on average, which means their housing costs were half of ours. They didn't go broke from medical expenses, they just died 5 or 10 years earlier than people do today. Finally, they did not have massive student loan debts because (a) they shopped around and lived like monks, and (b) their parents voted for politicians who were willing the tax the rich in order to fund higher education.

Almost 100% of these are choices an individual can make. Mustachianism is kind of the radical concept that buying all this stuff is less important than saving. Yet the market will still get you, because it is nearly impossible or undesirable to not pay for things like internet, medications, and cars with airbags and power steering. Maybe we get more "value" but we're going broke on the "bargains" around us.

Alfred J Quack

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #32 on: March 06, 2019, 05:52:55 AM »
I think it's a badge of honor to move from delusional (which people call you when you're starting your FIRE plan but don't have much money yet) to troll (after you follow your plan for a few years and end up in the exact spot you said you would). We're at around 400K in our early 30s, with the FIRE finish line on the (distant) horizon, and are finally getting called trolls, because "That's impossible in Vancouver on average income, and travelling to six countries a year at the same time? Quit your bullshit."

I suspect that the complainers (regardless of the fase) see the road to FIRE as well as the resulting FIRE so far beyond their scope of possibilities that their brains simply cannot comprehend nor cope. Thus, the only action they can possibly take is refute the claims as [insert bad name].

The same happens in religous sects (spelling?), they get brainwashed to the point that they are inherently dependent on the brainwashing. The only difference is that the one is mainstream and the other is considered fanatical. The only solution in either case is critical thinking and common sense.

ixtap

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #33 on: March 06, 2019, 06:35:41 AM »
I think it's a badge of honor to move from delusional (which people call you when you're starting your FIRE plan but don't have much money yet) to troll (after you follow your plan for a few years and end up in the exact spot you said you would). We're at around 400K in our early 30s, with the FIRE finish line on the (distant) horizon, and are finally getting called trolls, because "That's impossible in Vancouver on average income, and travelling to six countries a year at the same time? Quit your bullshit."

I suspect that the complainers (regardless of the fase) see the road to FIRE as well as the resulting FIRE so far beyond their scope of possibilities that their brains simply cannot comprehend nor cope. Thus, the only action they can possibly take is refute the claims as [insert bad name].

The same happens in religous sects (spelling?), they get brainwashed to the point that they are inherently dependent on the brainwashing. The only difference is that the one is mainstream and the other is considered fanatical. The only solution in either case is critical thinking and common sense.

Yep. The first time we visited my sister in her new 5000sqft home, with her brand new larger SUV that replaced the 2 year old slightly smaller one, she told us we can do the things we do because we don't have kids. She had a brand new SUV again this year. I guess if you have kids, you have to have a car payment and at least 1000 sqft per person?

Alfred J Quack

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #34 on: March 06, 2019, 07:24:32 AM »
I think it's a badge of honor to move from delusional (which people call you when you're starting your FIRE plan but don't have much money yet) to troll (after you follow your plan for a few years and end up in the exact spot you said you would). We're at around 400K in our early 30s, with the FIRE finish line on the (distant) horizon, and are finally getting called trolls, because "That's impossible in Vancouver on average income, and travelling to six countries a year at the same time? Quit your bullshit."

I suspect that the complainers (regardless of the fase) see the road to FIRE as well as the resulting FIRE so far beyond their scope of possibilities that their brains simply cannot comprehend nor cope. Thus, the only action they can possibly take is refute the claims as [insert bad name].

The same happens in religous sects (spelling?), they get brainwashed to the point that they are inherently dependent on the brainwashing. The only difference is that the one is mainstream and the other is considered fanatical. The only solution in either case is critical thinking and common sense.

Yep. The first time we visited my sister in her new 5000sqft home, with her brand new larger SUV that replaced the 2 year old slightly smaller one, she told us we can do the things we do because we don't have kids. She had a brand new SUV again this year. I guess if you have kids, you have to have a car payment and at least 1000 sqft per person?
LOL, our house is around 1200sqft for 4 people, considered entry-level in our area :D We've had 2 cars since 2009 when I met my wife and sold my car in favour of hers. The second car was bought because DS2 was on the way

Just Joe

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #35 on: March 06, 2019, 07:58:12 AM »
Yep. The first time we visited my sister in her new 5000sqft home, with her brand new larger SUV that replaced the 2 year old slightly smaller one, she told us we can do the things we do because we don't have kids. She had a brand new SUV again this year. I guess if you have kids, you have to have a car payment and at least 1000 sqft per person?

Yep and she has kids so technically she can't do the things she is doing, she just doesn't know it yet... (just kidding)

Malkynn

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #36 on: March 06, 2019, 08:16:17 AM »
I think it's a badge of honor to move from delusional (which people call you when you're starting your FIRE plan but don't have much money yet) to troll (after you follow your plan for a few years and end up in the exact spot you said you would). We're at around 400K in our early 30s, with the FIRE finish line on the (distant) horizon, and are finally getting called trolls, because "That's impossible in Vancouver on average income, and travelling to six countries a year at the same time? Quit your bullshit."

I suspect that the complainers (regardless of the fase) see the road to FIRE as well as the resulting FIRE so far beyond their scope of possibilities that their brains simply cannot comprehend nor cope. Thus, the only action they can possibly take is refute the claims as [insert bad name].

The same happens in religous sects (spelling?), they get brainwashed to the point that they are inherently dependent on the brainwashing. The only difference is that the one is mainstream and the other is considered fanatical. The only solution in either case is critical thinking and common sense.

Yep. The first time we visited my sister in her new 5000sqft home, with her brand new larger SUV that replaced the 2 year old slightly smaller one, she told us we can do the things we do because we don't have kids. She had a brand new SUV again this year. I guess if you have kids, you have to have a car payment and at least 1000 sqft per person?

Ugh.
I get the "you can only do that because you don't have kids" allll theeeeee tiiiiiiiiime.

And I'm like "but...but...I learned this lifestyle from my dad...who had 3 kids...wtf?"

And "ahh...yes, you are correct. Having kids DOES mean that you need to upgrade your kitchen. Everyone knows that laminate countertops and white appliances are deadly to babies!"

Cassie

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #37 on: March 06, 2019, 08:43:35 AM »
I am 64 and everyone I knew lived below their means while raising kids.  One parent stayed home until the youngest went to school and then went back to work.  We paid cash for 3 college degrees for me.  Eating out was going to Macdonald once a month.   People want to have instant gratification now.

Holyoak

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #38 on: March 06, 2019, 09:56:54 AM »
I am 64 and everyone I knew lived below their means while raising kids.  One parent stayed home until the youngest went to school and then went back to work.  We paid cash for 3 college degrees for me.  Eating out was going to Macdonald once a month.   People want to have instant gratification now.

Amen, fully agree.  McDonalds WAS A TREAT!, and we were lucky to go 3 times a year.  I remember eating potatoes for two weeks straight, because that was all we had.  My brother and I both earned ROTC scholarships for college, so when we started out we had minimal school debt.  Even if you did have school debt (say 1989), it was not ANYWHERE NEAR what it is today - Of course my first two years of living in a dorm had two guys to a small room, 6 toilets and 4 showers per floor, and NO amenities (God, I hate that fucking word).  Oh wait, the 12 floor high-rise dorm *did* have a single ping pong table, a snack and cigarette vending machine in the lobby.  Swoll baller G... 

Even when I had my own room in a suite my Junior year, 5 guys shared a single bathroom with a single shower and commode (and a single corded wall phone).  Now it literally looks like Club Med at a lot of schools; gourmet dining options, Starbucks, fast food joints on campus, "luxury" suites...  Fucking ridiculous.

ChpBstrd

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #39 on: March 07, 2019, 09:18:25 AM »
I am 64 and everyone I knew lived below their means while raising kids.  One parent stayed home until the youngest went to school and then went back to work.  We paid cash for 3 college degrees for me.  Eating out was going to Macdonald once a month.   People want to have instant gratification now.

Amen, fully agree.  McDonalds WAS A TREAT!, and we were lucky to go 3 times a year.  I remember eating potatoes for two weeks straight, because that was all we had.  My brother and I both earned ROTC scholarships for college, so when we started out we had minimal school debt.  Even if you did have school debt (say 1989), it was not ANYWHERE NEAR what it is today - Of course my first two years of living in a dorm had two guys to a small room, 6 toilets and 4 showers per floor, and NO amenities (God, I hate that fucking word).  Oh wait, the 12 floor high-rise dorm *did* have a single ping pong table, a snack and cigarette vending machine in the lobby.  Swoll baller G... 

Even when I had my own room in a suite my Junior year, 5 guys shared a single bathroom with a single shower and commode (and a single corded wall phone).  Now it literally looks like Club Med at a lot of schools; gourmet dining options, Starbucks, fast food joints on campus, "luxury" suites...  Fucking ridiculous.

I can relate! At my state school I had a 9 floor dorm with 10x10 cinder block rooms that 2 dudes would share. Locker room style "buddy bathrooms" and a cafeteria plan rounded out the lifestyle.

Here's the shocker: I graduated debt-free, covering living expenses, whiskey, tuition, and fees from part time work during the school year and full time retail gigs each summer.

They tore down my old dorm and put in apartments. The only way a high school graduate without a full time job or massive parental gifts could afford an apartment would be by... going into debt.

If ever the debt spigot was turned down, or if the next generation refuses to take on debt, the American university system will collapse. Otherwise, online programs will kill them off. Judging by the universities' focus on upselling, they don't even know they're doomed.

ChpBstrd

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #40 on: March 07, 2019, 03:06:47 PM »
I don't think the university system would collapse without student loan debt. That system has been around a lot longer than student loans and even poorer people have found a way to attend. Working while attending, scholarships, joining the military (my route to cost-free university degrees as a "poor" person), etc. Schools would probably lower costs and students would lower their social outlet expectations and go back to being starving students living on top ramen and cheap beer.

The schools themselves are very different than the universities of decades past. They have gone into long term debt to finance the "amenities" that have already exceeded their customers' affordability or purchase rationale. Compared to the universities of, say, the 1960s, the current product has no barebones housing - only apartments, high athletic, technology, programs, parking, and misellaneous fees, and a wide variety of degree programs for which there are no jobs for graduates.

There is a resemblance to automakers like Ford and Chrysler, who have stopped making economical products alltogether in favor of the higher margin trucks and SUVs they need to support their massive debts. These automakers are one deep recession or oil price shock away from insolvency. Similarly, if student behavior changed over a 10 year period, the universities would have a hard time pruning entire departments, ending a few sports programs, and maintaining the empty buildings.

The universities have shifted upmarket at exactly the time the internet is making information free, hundreds of credentialing organizations are replacing college degrees as indicators of professional education, and middle class savings rates are near historic lows.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #41 on: March 07, 2019, 04:08:52 PM »
I can relate! At my state school I had a 9 floor dorm with 10x10 cinder block rooms that 2 dudes would share. Locker room style "buddy bathrooms" and a cafeteria plan rounded out the lifestyle.

...

They tore down my old dorm and put in apartments. The only way a high school graduate without a full time job or massive parental gifts could afford an apartment would be by... going into debt.
Holy cow, the exact same thing happened to the university where I attended.  They knocked down the high-density dorms (which were mostly populated by freshmen) and put up far lower-density apartments.

I don't think the university system would collapse without student loan debt. That system has been around a lot longer than student loans and even poorer people have found a way to attend. Working while attending, scholarships, joining the military (my route to cost-free university degrees as a "poor" person), etc. Schools would probably lower costs and students would lower their social outlet expectations and go back to being starving students living on top ramen and cheap beer.
I think you're right.  As the old saying goes, "if you want more of something, subsidize it."  And that's exactly what's happened--government subsidies for college attendance (in the form of student loans) have increased college attendance.  Higher demand naturally drives higher prices.

What's interesting is the perverse incentives that have been created--we're getting more college attendees, but not necessarily a proportionate number of graduates or economic benefit.  Witness the surge in college majors of ... ah ... questionable marketability.

nereo

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #42 on: March 08, 2019, 05:13:52 AM »
Ok - since we've strayed into Universities and their costs I'm jumping in here.

People love to blame 'unnecessary student amenities' on the rising cost of student tuition, but that's really not driving rising tuition costs. It's a drop in the bucket of expenses, and most unversities will argue its become necessary (or at least benefitial) to attract the caliber student that they need to survive.

the main drivers of higher-education cost include:
Reduced funding.  Tuition is only one source, and was a minor one the last few decades.  Federal and state support has plummeted in real terms, and when I checked last c2016 every single state contributed less to its state universities than they had before the great recession. 

Increased admin ratios. Similar to most corporations have larger administrative staffs now, modern universities require a ton my staff that are not directly educators. At my previous institution our department had increased its admin staff by 3x since 1972, but the number of professors and lecturers had actually decreased by about 10%.  Of course admin will say they absolitely cannot run without this number of legal and accountants and HR etc... and they are probably right.

Increasing costs of iworker benefits (+ insurance).  This is huge, and along with reduced funding (see above) explains most of the jump.  The biggest liabiliities with a unviersity is paying for healthcare and retirement benefits.

Rising costs of doing just about everything a university does.  This is a catchall, but compared to a few decades ago basic research costs way more, maintenance on facilities (particularly those from the 60s-70s when we were in a secondary-education boom) are substantial, there's overhead costs that never existed before the early 2000s (eg the very expensive IT side of colleges)...

 

DadJokes

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #43 on: March 08, 2019, 08:57:22 AM »
Adding on regarding the sports programs...many programs (I hesitate to say most because I have no data to back it up) generate revenue for the university.

My alma mater, who is not even a Division I school, still generates enough money through its football and basketball programs to cover the costs of all other sports programs.

RetiredAt63

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #44 on: March 08, 2019, 04:59:13 PM »
Ok - since we've strayed into Universities and their costs I'm jumping in here.


Not just admin - I saw so many academic support/student services positions added over my teaching career.  They were needed and used, but they add to the total cost.

Blindsquirrel

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Re: FIRE = Troll...
« Reply #45 on: March 11, 2019, 06:32:02 PM »
 Nereo, so much truth to this. Went to a massive B1G school in the midwest, the price increase has been thievish for universities. To add to your points

the main drivers of higher-education cost include:
Reduced funding.  Tuition is only one source, and was a minor one the last few decades.  Federal and state support has plummeted in real terms, and when I checked last c2016 every single state contributed less to its state universities than they had before the great recession. 
OMG yes, In-State school tuition was $153 a year in 1951, $1761 in 1986, and now is $10,726 in tuition plus $12,434 in room and board and living in dorms is now required for both Fr and So . The state used to subsidize the heck out of land grant colleges, now they are subsidized by the student loan fiasco. Land grant schools were formed to provide education to the residents of the state for benefit of the state in having an educated population. Now, the costs have been transferred to 18-25 year olds via debt that will follow you to the grave if you do not pay that sh!t offf! Yes, you can do it cheaper/military/academic/athletic scholarship etc but the increase has crushed the inflation rate.

Increased admin ratios. Similar to most corporations have larger administrative staffs now, modern universities require a ton my staff that are not directly educators. At my previous institution our department had increased its admin staff by 3x since 1972, but the number of professors and lecturers had actually decreased by about 10%.  Of course admin will say they absolitely cannot run without this number of legal and accountants and HR etc... and they are probably right.
OMG yes, the school converted a massive 18 story dorm into? Yep administration offices.


Rising costs of doing just about everything a university does.  This is a catchall, but compared to a few decades ago basic research costs way more, maintenance on facilities (particularly those from the 60s-70s when we were in a secondary-education boom) are substantial, there's overhead costs that never existed before the early 2000s (eg the very expensive IT side of colleges)...

Yes, the price of everything went up but higher ed >>> more than inflation. The sports program at my Alma Mater is enormous and profitable. Though watching them thrash their rivals like a rented mule is always nice. :)